Monday, October 31, 2011
Relatives of a Palestinian killed in an Israeli air strike on Oct 30 cry at the al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City (AFP PHOTO / MOHAMMED ABED)
GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories: Egypt helped broker a fresh ceasefire by militants in Gaza Sunday, after violence left nine Palestinians and one Israeli dead, sources close to the groups said.
The truce with Israel was due to come into effect at 6:00 am (0400 GMT, 12pm Singapore time), said sources close to Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the two main Islamist groups in the Gaza Strip.
The agreement between all the Palestinian factions in Gaza came after the intervention of Egypt, the sources said.
“The efforts and intensive contacts led by senior Egyptian intelligence service officials led to a national consensus to restore calm” with Israel, a leader of one Palestinian group, who asked to remain anonymous, told AFP.
Israeli warplanes raided the Gaza Strip Saturday and early Sunday, killing nine Islamic Jihad militants, while retaliatory rocket fire from Gaza killed one Israeli.
The exchanges were the bloodiest since a tacit ceasefire was agreed between Gaza Palestinian militants and Israel in late August.